JOLIET – Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow announced that a Joliet man has been sentenced to 45 years in prison for the murder of a man inside the Lois Place apartment complex in 2009.
A jury in August found Jesus Zambrano, 23, guilty offirst-degree murder for the killing of Robert Gooch on May 22, 2009. Another man, Pedro Sanchez, also of Joliet, already has been convicted of murder in connection with this shooting and is serving a 61-year prison sentence.
Zambrano and Sanchez confronted Gooch at the apartment of Gooch’s girlfriend, Ellissa Hinton, according to trial testimony. Hinton testified she was having sex occasionally with Sanchez, but that she wouldn’t allow their relationship to go further by leaving Gooch.
Hinton testified she and Gooch had watched the NBA playoffs and had gone to bed on the night of the murder. Later that evening, Gooch answered the apartment buzzer while she remained in the bedroom. She testified she heard Sanchez’s voice in the living room and someone saying “my girl” just before she heard a single gunshot.
She went to the living room to find Gooch lying on the floor bleeding from the head. An autopsy revealed Gooch died from a gunshot wound to the back of the head. Gooch’s two young children were sleeping on a sofa bed inthe living room at the time of the murder.
“These two thugs committed an act of despicable brutality by gunning down an unarmed man while his two children were asleep in the sameroom,” said State’s Attorney Glasgow. “Jesus Zambrano has been taken off our streets thanks to a first-rate investigation by the Joliet Police Department and top-notch trial work by prosecutors Dan Walsh and Tricia McKenna.”
The prosecutors entered into evidence security tapes from the apartment complex showing Zambrano and Sanchez arriving at the parking lot in Sanchez’s car, getting out of the vehicle and then returning to the car before driving away. A witness testified he saw Zambrano retrieve an object from under the hood of the car before the two entered the apartment complex.Zambrano and Sanchez were caught on video running from the building after Goochwas shot